Finding the right fabric for knit dresses like your Appleton Dress can be intimidating, especially if you’re newer to sewing with knits. But never fear! We’re here to help. The world of online fabric shopping is a rich one, if you know what you’re looking for.
The most important thing to look for in your fabric is stretch and weight – along with an awesome print or color, of course! You’ll need a light- to mid-weight knit fabric with at least 50% crosswise stretch, and we recommend jersey or ITY.In terms of fibre type, the Appleton Dress suits cotton, rayon, or poly jerseys really well. If you’re feeling fancy, why not give silk jersey a try?
Some more tips:
- We don’t recommend “tissue-weight” jerseys – they’ll be too thin for this type of dress – or ponte, which will be too heavy and won’t have the stretch you need. If you’re ordering online and you’re unsure about the weight, ordering a swatch is a great idea.
- Pay attention to the width – many if not most knits come in 54 – 60″ width, which means you need less than for a regular 45″ width fabric. Our fabric requirements have yardage for 45″ or 60″ (and the equivalent in metric):
- Remember to pre-wash your fabric before you sew! Also, black and darker jerseys can fade and pill over time with washing, so if you use one, make sure you wash it on cold/gentle, and ideally air dry or low tumble dry.
Today, we’ve pulled together some fun fabrics that we think would make a beautiful Appleton Dress!
Wrap dresses are such a fun silhouette on which to play with prints. Zebras? Why not! Pair it with black boots and a black jacket and you’re ready for a night out with friends. A painterly print like the Art Gallery knit on the bottom left paired with clogs and chunky bracelets works for brunch or a day spent at the vintage market.
Floral wrap dresses have an iconic look and depending on the scale of the floral can have very different aesthetics. Go for a large scale floral (like the one on the cover of the pattern or the top center pick) for a bold statement. Smaller scale ore more monochromatic florals read as a neutral. If you want to break up the look of an all-over floral, choose a complementary shade of a solid knit for the neckband and waist ties.
Stripes, triangles, polka dots…these classic geometric prints are great neutral workhorses in your wardrobe. Great options for work or play, you can’t go wrong with a simple geometric pattern.
Finding quality solids that have the right texture and drape for a wrap dress can be surprisingly tricky. In addition to the ones shown above, our friends at Grey’s Fabric and Notions carry an excellent variety of solid bamboo spandex jersey that works exceptionally well for this pattern.
Grey’s Fabric is also generously offering a 15% off discount from now until 10/22 using the code appleton at checkout! The Art Gallery knits available at Grey’s are also a great choice for the Appleton Dress.
In addition to Grey’s, here are some online retailers that we recommend:
Do you have any other recommendations for great sources of knits?
Finally: you could buy a Cashmerette fabric kit! Alas, we’ve sold out of the Black & White bird kit, but we still have the awesome Polka dot kit available – which would be a totally fab dress for the holidays… Thanksgiving in a tie-to-fit no-waistband wrap dress? Yes please! The kit comes with black jersey, stretch mesh arms (actually very easy to sew!), ribbing for cuffs, and a tutorial on how to adjust the pattern to add the cuffs.
We can’t wait to see what fabric you choose for your Appleton Dress! Come back next week when we start working on our dresses.